January 21, 2020
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If Divorce Do Us Part
If you’ve been reading stories of American men shelling out huge alimonies to conniving ex-wives, get real. In India, the divorced wife gets pitifully little—and the law is okay with that. For instance, the onus is on the woman to prove her husband’s capacity to pay the alimony she seeks. And the papers she’ll need to prove ‘capacity to pay’ are almost always out of her reach.

Ideally... Asset papers should be kept in a joint safety locker.

Indian law does not believe in community of marital property. So, marital assets belong to the person in whose name they were bought. Fat chance you’ll get anything in a divorce situation if the assets have not been bought in your name.

Ideally... All assets should be co-owned.

Often, the woman gets to keep only her stridhan (gifts of jewellery and suchlike she gets from parents and in-laws at the wedding and during her marriage). And that, again, if she manages to prove that these were indeed part of her stridhan

Ideally... Both sets of parents should ensure that all gifts made to the woman are in her name.

Nothing hurts the woman’s interest more than her own ignorance.

Ideally... she should wake up to what’s hers and what’s not.

Make No Mistake

Five common investment blunders the average investor makes:

  • 80-90 per cent of his money goes into debt, the rest in shares. A midway approach—say, moving from bank FDs to a diversified equity fund—could make his money grow faster.

  • If PSU stocks are rising, he wants them. Don’t follow the herd; research your investments.

  • His expectations from variable-return instruments are unrealistic. Fine, the stock market will return more than bank FDs over the long term, but not many times over.

  • Come February and he invests in chunks to save tax. Panic investing simply does not compare with regular long term investments.

  • Financial planning is more than tax planning. Insurance, taxes and estate planning are all part of the big picture.

Win Some, Lose Some
Here are some affirmations and surprises culled from the latest quarterly results. A signpost to the future, read them keeping in mind the company’s growth prospects. The Scorecard

For more details on these articles, read Intelligent Investor or log on to www.iinvestor.com and also get personalised information and analysis from our experts who answer queries on small savings, insurance, loans, taxation, mutual funds and shares.

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